HOW TO CLEANSE :: Detox 101



DON’T POO-POO A CLEANSE :: Doing a detox cleanse, also called detoxing, is becoming increasingly popular, and this time of year is the perfect time to give your body some love before strutting your stuff this spring and summer. GGN spells out the facts about how to cleanse, and offer two cleanses to try. Plus, we took Dr. Oz’s 3-Day re-set cleanse and share how that went.

We asked Calgary-based holistic nutritional consultant Janet Perry, Certified Holistic Nutritionist™, (who recently supplied GGN the garlic soup recipe readers went crazy for) to share her how to cleanse expertise and provide advise and sample recipes.

What Is Cleansing? The whole foods used in cleansing remove most sugars, bad fats, chemicals and artifice commonly found in a modern diet, consuming only those for a period of time is termed a ‘detox’ or a ‘cleanse’. Proper cleansing encourages the body to do what it wants to naturally, is gentle and should be tolerable for longer periods of time. A cleanse can take from three days to six weeks. Notes Perry, “A safe cleanse is one which doesn’t make you starve yourself or take fancy pills, potions or expensive drinks.”

Why Cleanse? Our bodies become toxic when our natural method of eliminating metabolic waste from poor diet and environmental pollutants and other factors cannot keep up with the amount of toxic overload. Toxicity can affect every system in the body, making us sick. Common complaints that can help you determine whether you have a toxic overload include:

  • Constipation, constant headaches, muscle ache and fatigue
  • High consumption of tuna, swordfish and shark
  • You have mercury dental fillings and dental amalgams
  • Food allergies/sensitivities
  • Stubborn weight loss
  • Being on a daily medication regime (such as HIV meds)
  • Hormonal imbalances (and consistent use of hormone replacement treatments such as birth control)
  • Consistent use of
  • ibuprofen or acetaminophen, or other over the counter medications
  • Skin abnormalities such as acne, rosacea or eczema
  • A lifetime of consuming lesser foods

Should I Cleanse? If you’ve experienced:

  • fatigue or low energy levels
  • sugar cravings or cravings for baked goods
  • salt cravings
  • having less than one bowel movement per day
  • indigestion / acid reflux
  • difficulty losing weight
  • recurring infections, colds or general malaise
  • frequent headaches
  • bad breath or excessive body odour
  • skin problems, such as acne, eczema, flushing or rashes

you will likely benefit from a dietary cleanse.

What to expect during your cleanse: People can sometimes experience what is known as a healing crisis –  this reaction occurs when the body tries to eliminate toxins at a faster rate than they can be properly disposed of. The more toxic one’s bodily systems are, the more severe the healing crisis. Such reactions are temporary and can occur immediately — or within several days, or even several weeks, of a detox. Symptoms usually pass within 1-3 days. When GGN publisher Shaun Proulx’s husband, Patrick Marano, who had never cleansed before, joined Shaun in attempting the Dr. Oz 3-day re-set cleanse, he was in bed all Day 2 feeling nauseous and suffering from headaches. The healing crisis is the result of every body-system, in concert, working to eliminate waste products through all elimination channels and set the stage for regeneration.

Common symptoms of a healing crisis are:

  • diarrhea
  • extreme fatigue and/or its opposite, restlessness
  • cramps
  • headaches
  • aches / pains
  • insomnia
  • nausea
  • sinus congestion
  • skin eruptions, including: boils, hives, and rashes
  • strong emotions: anger, despair, sadness, fear, for example

To ease your way through a healing crisis, drink plenty of fresh water to flush the body of toxins. Try to drink from 2 to 4 litres per day to help flush the toxins out of your system and speed along the detoxification.

It sounds awful. What’s the upside?

Some of the ways a detox can benefit you are:

  • improved immune function
  • more energy
  • clearer complexion
  • weight loss
  • removal of mucous, congestion, fermentation and inflammation in your digestive tract

A cleanse can also help reform lifestyle addictions for sugar, salt, alcohol, junk foods, nicotine, etc.

Perry created the following basic, 7-day cleanse for GGN readers; Proulx has continued this cleanse for as long as 30-days before, noting, “The longer I stuck to it, the easier it became and the better I felt.”


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